30k Race Report

on Sunday, August 23, 2009 at 3:33 PM

Did the Midsummer Nights Run 30k which was held last night.  The race was at 5:30pm.  I did this race back in 2006 when it started at 8pm.  I wasn't sure how to prepare for this.  I ate some spaghetti and meatballs for breakfast at around 8am but didn't really stuff myself.  Sipped on gatorade for most of the day and then had an apple fritter with a small Tim Horton's ice capp at about 3:30pm. Probably should have had a bit more solid food, maybe a bagel or something for lunch, cause i was starving after the race.

Pfitz' plan has 15 miles planned with 12 at marathon pace. 30k is 18.6 miles, so the plan was to go out at my BQ marathon pace until the timing mat at 21k (around 13 miles) and then slow down to long run pace for the rest of the way.

Met up with Kenny ahead of the race where we decided to try and pace each other.  Also met twitter friend leehewitt before the race while waiting in line at the portapotties. I think I must have used the portapotties 4 times before the race. One of the consequences of having an all liquid diet for most of the day.

The race starts.  One thing that I've come to learn about myself is that I need a very gradual increase in pace in order to avoid my HR from spiking.  On most of my training runs, i will start out at 9:30 min/mile pace or slower and gradually increase to whatever pace I'm trying for on that day.  Even when coming to stop at a traffic light, i have to ease back into it.  If I start too fast, I think my body gets over anxious and goes into a fight or flight mode and the HR spikes. I think this is probably why i have difficulty with shorter races.  Things were going okay for the first 2km, the HR spiked shortly thereafter and would remain that way until i stopped for a breather at the 22km mark. 

Most of the first 21km went by without much fuss.  Kenny and I had the odd conversation, but not easy to do for any length of time when doing marathon pace.  One particularly interesting thing was I had a fly go up my nose.  On runs, I've had bugs fly into my mouth or get jammed in my eye, but I've never had the pleasure of having a bug fly up my nose.  This happened somewhere between the 9 and 10 mile mark.  I was trying  to figure out the best way to get it out.  I contemplated the snot rocket thing, but i've never tried that before and didn't want to risk being covered with mucous. In marathons, i will usually carry some toilet paper in a little ziploc baggie in case i need it.  I didn't  bring it today and as Murphy's law would dictate, I needed it.  So for the better part of a mile, i was forced to solely mouth breath for risk of inhaling the damn thing into my lungs.  Thankfully, there were some empty portapotties on the route shortly before the 11 mile mark where i was able to grab some toilet paper and finally blow my nose.

Hit the 21km mark at 1:35:56 which is 7:21 min/mile (4:34 min/km) and at that point let Kenny go as I slowed down.  I was hoping that the slowdown in pace would cause the HR to get back under control, but it didn't so shortly after the 22km mark I came across the a washroom and water fountain and stopped to try to get the HR under control, use the facilities and take a gel.  One way i've learned to do this is via the Valsalva maneuver.  This involves holding ones breath and bearing down.  This has worked in the past, but it can't be done on the move since the holding breath thing and tensing up the whole body is kinda difficult to do while running. Doing this, i was able to get the HR back to normal.  I lost a minute and a half for the pitsop and that included a bathroom break. From that point on, I maintained long run pace through most of the rest of the race.  I  picking up the pace in the last two km and did the final km at LT pace. Finish time of 2:22:39.

Here's the HR chart with the spiked portions. Split times and course route for the race can be seen here.

Fairly happy with this race.  Kinda wish I had warmed up a bit more prior to the race cause i think it would have prevented the HR spiking thing.

Some nice swag from this race. Long sleeve technical T-shirt.  Made sure to get the small this year, since my previous experience with the new balance shirts are that they are way too big for their size.   Huge medal.  This year they encouraged people to bring their own bottles for the race to try and save the enivornment.  I just thought this was a way to cheapen out on the provision of cups, but to their credit, they took it even further in not providing bottled water at the end of the race in plastic bottles.  Instead, they handed out stainless steel water bottles filled with water.  Nice!  And lastly, for those that have done the race before, they gave out Mortal-pins that contain the total mileage that you've done as part of the race over the years.  Having done the 30k and 15k in previous years, i got one that said 75km.

Oh yeah and one last thing I received was bug bites.  Mosquito bites on my neck and upper back. Itchy. I have to remember to wear bug repellent when I do evening races.  This is the second evening race I've done where the mosquitoes have gotten to me. 


yumke said...

Great running with you, really helped to have someone to pace with. I guess we could have eased into pace over the first little bit, seems like a good thing to try. I get strong finishes at races where I start slower than usual then ramp up over the miles.

Steve said...

Just another day at the office for marathon junkie eh!

Ive had flies in my mouth, but never up my nose... that would have driven me crazy. And mosquitos?.. No thanks.

Seems like they always give better swag in Canada. I really like the square finisher medal.

jen said...

Congrats! Very solid pace for such a long distance. The shirt, bottle, and medal are great!

Too funny about the fly in your nose, I would have rocketed it out asap just out of surprise/fear. I admire your patience. :D The things we put our selves through for running, right??

Keep up the great work!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

great race!! ewwww bug in the nose!! Love the medal, and getting the stainless steel bottle is great! Well done!

Rob M said...

That's some solid running. And it sounds like a really great race.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on a well-executed race plan! I find that the hardest thing about evening races is food - I usually binge eat at the last minute and Midsummer Night was no exception. At least this year it wasn't chocolate covered almonds :).